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Press Release

Sept. 12, 2013

Contact: Vernon Smith, 301-713-7248

NOAA Sanctuaries establishes new business advisory council

NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries has established a new business advisory council to give its director the views of industry leaders as they work with corporate partners in marine resource protection.

"The ocean is a fundamental part of the U.S. economy, security, history, and culture," said Daniel J. Basta, director of the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries. "However, the relationship between the conservation and commercial sectors is not well understood or coordinated. We hope this council will help us bridge that divide."

Business leaders will be invited to join the council, which will consist of 15 volunteers representing industries such as travel and tourism, recreation, fishing, transportation, energy, and marketing. Members will be appointed by the national marine sanctuaries director and serve two- to three-year terms.

Council members will serve as liaisons between their industries and NOAA, keeping sanctuary leadership informed of issues and concerns, as well as providing information to their respective sectors about national marine sanctuary system initiatives. The council will not have a role in providing advice on regulatory or administrative matters.

The council will work with sanctuary leadership on strategies to use the sanctuary system's recreational value and beauty to aid local economies, engage the corporate sector and other non-traditional partners in marine resource protection, and develop projects to sustain and protect the sanctuaries and other marine protected areas, among other initiatives. Click here for additional information about the business council.

NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries serves as trustee for a system of 14 marine protected areas, encompassing more than 170,000 square miles of America's ocean and Great Lakes waters. Through active research, management, and public engagement, national marine sanctuaries sustain healthy environments that are the foundation for thriving communities and stable economies. Authority for the business advisory council is provided under the National Marine Sanctuaries Act.

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